Basic Organic Nomenclature

An Introduction

Dave Woodcock,
Associate Professor Emeritus UBC (Okanagan)
©1996,2000, 2008

5. Functional Groups
with Suffix or Prefix

III Alkanols
(Alcohols)

Index


Atomic grouping
Suffix-ol
Prefixhydroxy
Position in chainanywhere
General formula CnH2n+2O
Common family name alcohols

Note: since the suffix (-ol) has an initial vowel, the terminal -e of the alkane name is dropped before the suffix is added, even if a locant is placed immediately before the suffix.


Unlike the alkanamines just considered, replacement of the H of the OH function does change the nature of the compound. The H of the OH is weakly acidic (about the same as water), and it is responsible for the presence of hydrogen bonding, making the lower members of the alkanol family less volatile than the corresponding isomeric ethers.
(The ether family is named using a prefix only: alkoxy.)

Examples :

StructureIUPAC NameModel
methanol
ethanol
propan-1-ol
propan-2-ol
cyclopentanol
ethane-1,2-diol *
pent-4-en-2-ol
pent-3-yn-1-ol
4-aminobutan-1-ol

* Because the suffix here is -diol which starts with a consonant, the terminal -e of the alkane name is retained.

Self Assignment Questions
Review Alkanamines

Next page : Alkanones.

Index


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